Wondering what it takes to succeed? Then let’s have a little look at some amazing and insightful tips from the one and only…Oprah.
I’m always inspired by people who have experienced considerable hardships in life…and then be able to completely turn it around…and in Oprah’s case, to become one of the planet’s most greatest philanthropist as well as…actress, publisher, producer and self-made millionaire, or should I say billionaire?
But more than any of that…I think the reason why most of us love Oprah so much, is because she is...so real. She’s honest, genuine and authentic. She never sugar coats anything, she has shared her struggles and bared her soul…so we may learn, better ourselves and create our own big dreams. And that has always been her message…to dream a ‘BIGGER’ dream for yourself.
I love the fact, that through her desire to have a ‘big dream’ for herself…has made her who she is today. Thankyou Oprah, for giving yourself permission to be amazing and reminding us that anything we truly desire…is achievable.
What does it actually take to succeed? Well, I guess it takes a burning desire, initiative, energy, perseverance and you definitely need to believe in yourself and believe that you can succeed. Plus… be able to stick it out…until it is completed. And not forgetting...the all important one...you must take action.
And… (drum roll) here is the big tip…ACTION cures fear. Why? Because when you take action it stops you fertilizing your fear. Isn’t that awesome!!! (Pinched that one from David J. Schwartz’s, The Magic of Thinking Big)
But…Let’s get to back to Oprah
In Oprah’s Harvard Commencement Speech she talks about how she wanted to be a journalist and make a difference. By the time she was 19 years old…she was on television and in 1986 she launched her own television show, with a relentless determination to succeed. Every year she would raise the bat, pushing herself as hard as she could, until she eventually made it to the top…and she stayed there for 25 years.
The Oprah show was No.1, in that time slot for 21 years. She says she was pretty comfortable with that level of success…but then she decided it was time to re-calculate…find new territory…break new ground. So she ended the show and launched, OWN, the Oprah Winfrey Network.
A year later after launching OWN, nearly every media outlet had proclaimed that her new venture was a big bold flop. Oprah says this was the worst period in her professional life. She was stressed, frustrated and embarrassed. It was around this time she was asked to speak to the graduates of Harvard. She wondered what she would say to the most successful graduates…when she herself felt she had stopped succeeding.
So she went off to have a shower…it was either that, or eat a bag of Oreo’s…(haha, isn’t she funny)…and whilst in the shower the words of a hymn came to her, “Trouble, trouble don’t last always. This too shall pass.” And she thought, as she got out of the shower, “I am going to turn this thing around...and I will be better for it…and when I do…I’m going to Harvard and speak the truth of it!”
Now Oprah is here to tell us…she has turned her OWN network around. (Go Miss Oprah!)
She goes onto say… “It doesn’t matter how far you may rise…at some point you are bound to stumble…because if your constantly raising the bar and pushing yourself higher, by the law of averages…you will at some point fall. And when you do I want you to know this…there is no such thing as failure. Failure is just life trying to move us…in another direction. And when you’re down in your hole...it’s ok to feel bad for a while. Give yourself time to mourn what you think you may of lost, but then…learn from every mistake…because every experience encountered….is there to teach you and force you into being more of why you are. And then…figure out what is the next right move. The key to life is to develop an internal GPS that can tell you which way to go.”
I love Oprah for sharing this, because we all know…or most of us do…that challenges are put in front of us to make us grow. But, isn’t it good to hear this from someone of her calibre, stature and wealth…that she still has this happen to her. For me… it’s like hallelujah…it really is a natural progression to our growth. That we are not doing it wrong, that this is actually a natural pathway to our growth…to our success. So when the sh#t hits the fan in life…we can actually remind ourselves, “Well, you know what…this stuff happens to Oprah…so I’m not alone here.”
Failure is just life trying to move us...in another direction
It’s about gently reminding ourselves…that there is a new pathway to be taken here.
Another awesome point Oprah makes in her speech is…the single most important lesson she learned in her 25 years of talking every single day to people…is that the most common denominator amongst all her guests was that, we don’t want to feel divided… but to be validated, to be understood, to be seen, to be heard…and to know what we say means something. All of her guests once the cameras stopped rolling would ask… “Was that ok. Was what I said ok.” It's just human nature, that we all want to be heard...we all want what we say, to mean something to people.
There is a light inside of us that illuminates your very human beingness…if you let it.
In the words of Oprah…
“There is only one goal for us all…and that is to fulfil the highest, most truthful, expression of yourself as a human being. You want to max out your humanity by using your energy…to lift yourself up, your family and the people around you.”
She quotes theologian Howard Thurman
“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive…and then go do that, because what the world needs…is people to come alive.”
Listen to that still small voice…
“From time to time you may stumble…fall…you will for sure have questions about your path…but if you’re willing to listen, to be guided by that still small voice…that is the GPS within you…you will find out what makes you come alive. You will be more than OK…you will be happy…you will be successful and you will make a difference in the world.”
You Can Watch Oprah's Harvard Speech Here..
Thankyou Oprah for your empowering wisdom. And for each and everyone of us...I think it is important that we remember...we have each come to play an important part...we are all equally important. No matter what it is you dream of doing...all you need is a relentless determination to succeed!